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Home > Books > Arab Archery > XLVII. Inscriptions on bows, arrows, and quivers
XLVII. Inscriptions on bows, arrows, and quivers
ON BOWS

SAID the poet:
            More dreaded by the dauntless foe
            Than any other warlike blow,
            Come the wooden shafts which are
            Shot with bows that send them far.
            They fell his ranks, line after line,
            And shower them with death divine.
            Piercing through the shield and mail,
            They cause the breath of life to fail.

And another:
            It falls to me to wield the bow and bend its limbs,
            Though in the act of death my arrow far excels it;
            For if to slay the foeman marks a weapon's rank,
            What can surpass that one which pierces through him?

And another:             Elegant in form and wonderful in structure!
            When such a thing is sought, the Arab bow is found.
            If enemies approach, it welcomes them with arrows,
            Laden with death and bearing fear and awe.
            Such is the Arab bow, with victory bound of God;
            His holy writ and revelation with its arrows spreading.

ON ARROWS

Said the poet:
            An arrow from a warrior,
            Shot at an unbeliever,
            Counts more than many prayers
            Said by a pious hermit.

ON QUIVERS

Said the poet:
            I am full of fatal arrows;
            My merchandise is death and pain.
            Learn by what thou hast seen of me.
            I am the blight of the wide world.

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